School canceled as hundreds of Colorado teachers plan to walk out Monday

DENVER -- Teacher walkouts in Kentucky, Oklahoma, West Virginia and elsewhere have dominated the news as of late.

Now a walkout is planned for Colorado.

The Englewood School District announced Thursday that classes will be canceled Monday as teachers head to the Capitol to lobby lawmakers for reform.

"We are calling Monday April 16th a day of action,” said Kerrie Dallman, president of the Colorado Education Association.

Dallman expects 400-plus teachers to be on hand Monday as they lobby lawmakers for change.

Some of the demands will be higher wages, a $150 million investment in school funding, as well as the protection of retiree benefits.

The CEA does not like a proposal to raise the retirement age from 58 to 65 in order to stabilize the Colorado Public Employees’ Retirement Association.

“We have teachers working second jobs,” Dollman said. “We have one teacher in Jefferson County who leaves school each day and goes and works as a dental hygienist."

Controversy with teacher pay in Colorado is not a new issue.

Englewood parents are supportive of the teachers' movement but some say the cancellation of class creates headaches.

“I hope their voices are heard,” said Julie Hoag, an Englewood parent. “I know there has been some frustration just from what I have heard -- a lot of working parents. It’s hard to find child care last minute."

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